19/10/2021 | Andrew Tracey
Andrew Tracey is a long time collaborator with Bulldog Gear. A coach, writer and current fitness editor of Men’s Health Magazine, he has been in and around the fitness industry for the past 16 years. Having enjoyed and endured a number of disciplines from endurance racing, to strongman, to Crossfit AT enjoys getting neck deep in the practice just as much as the theory.

Sometimes it feels like there aren’t enough hours in the day. Juggling work, family, hobbies and health can feel like a Sisyphean task; one for which lunchtime workouts could be a powerful tonic.

The benefits of a quick midday exercise hit go far beyond simply being time savvy, in fact the knock-on effect of a lunchtime sweat could improve your entire day. Exercise has been proven time and again to increase your mood, making you better equipped to optimistically handle the afternoon’s task, this doubles down when you factor in the stress crushing hormones released during exercise, which give way to mental clarity and an unparalleled increase in your problem solving abilities. There’s a reason the phrase ‘a sound mind, in a sound body’ has endured the test of time; it rings true.

Understandably, this may sound like a pretty rose tinted appraisal, and certainly lunchtime workouts have their logistical drawbacks. But with a bit a forward planning, a lunch hour liaison with a kettlebell may just be the mood boosting, productivity sharpening antidote to your afternoon slump.

Here’s 3 workout options to help you make the shift from cafeteria lethargy to office athlete.



One of the most effective fitness ‘hacks’ you can implement into your life is storing a kettlebell (or dumbbell) in your car boot, or under your desk. It’s a small investment in your health and fitness that could have huge returns. You may be put off by strange looks from colleagues, the first time you head out for a car park throwdown, but we assure you it probably won’t be long before you’re the ringleader of a bonafide office ‘fit club’.

Once you’ve got your ‘bell in tow, or stashed away, warm-up and work your way through this 20 minute workout, before refuelling and heading back to your desk.

Start a countdown timer for 15-20minutes (or whatever you can spare). Begin with 2 reps of each movement, followed by a fast paced run, upon your return perform 4 reps of each movement, run again, then 6 reps; so on, so forth until the the bell sounds for time.

On your cleans and thrusters, alternate hands each rep for a balanced workout.

2, 4, 6, 8, 10 etc… of-

1. Alternating hang clean

Holding your dumbbell at your side. Hinge at the hips to lower it to your knee. Stand back up explosively with a slight jump, using the momentum to pull the dumbbell on to your shoulders. Stand up straight, then lower under control to your side and repeat. 

2. Alternating thruster 

After your final clean, keep the dumbbell on your shoulder and squat down, keeping your back straight and your chest up, until your thighs are beyond parallel to the ground. Stand back up explosively and, in one motion, press the dumbbell overhead to full lockout. Swap hands, now, lower the weight to your opposite shoulder and repeat.

3. Burpee over dumbbell

Place your dumbbell down, but don’t slow your pace. Step back and hit the deck, lowering your body until your chest touches the floor. Stand back up and jump powerfully over the dumbbell– land softly on the opposite side of the bell, that’s one rep. Drop to the floor and go again. 

4. 100m-200m run between each round

Hold a good pace throughout, challenge yourself but also ensure you’re recovered enough for your next dance with the dumbbell. Split the run into 20-25m shuttles if space is an issue.



If you’re not quite ready to commit to kit at work yet, this quick blast relies solely on your bodyweight to build strength, increase your fitness and sharpen your mental acuity for the day ahead.

Start a running clock, at the beginning of each minute perform 10 push-ups, followed by 15 air squats, with these despatched, drop into a single burpee. The catch? Each new minute that elapses, throw in an additional burpee, working your way up the ladder until you can no longer fit all of the prescribed work into seconds. Next time? Climb higher…

1. Push-up x 10

Drop into a strong plank position, with your core tight and hands shoulder width apart, bend your elbows to bring your chest to the floor. Keep your elbows close to your body as you push back up explosively.

2. Squat x 10

Stand with your torso upright and your hands on your head, drop your hips back to sink into a deep squat. Hold for a second, before pressing through your heels to stand up, repeat.

3. Burpee x 1,2,3,4…etc.

After your final squat, immediately place both hands on the floor between your feet. Jump your feet back into the top of a press-up and lower your chest to the ground. Straighten your arms and hop your feet forwards, before jumping into the air with hands on head.



If you’re looking to put a bit of distance between your fitness endeavours and the watchful eyes of your colleagues, then a lunchtime jog may be your meal ticket. This remix of a simple run, however does more than just put mileage on your feel, helping to build strength in your legs and upper body with a circuit at the half way mark.

Set yourself a timer for around 30% of the total time you have to exercise (ie if you have 30 mins, set a clock for 10), and start running, aiming to cover as much distance as you can in that time. When the buzzer goes, stop and work your way through the below ‘AMRAP’ (as many rounds as possible) circuit for the same amount of time. Once the clock sounds again, you have the remaining time to high tail it back to the office. A very sound incentive to hold a decent pace.

1. Push-up x 10

Drop into a strong plank position, with your core tight and hands shoulder width apart, bend your elbows to bring your chest to the floor. Keep your elbows close to your body as you push back up explosively.

2. Sit ups x 15

Flip over and lay flat on the deck for some sit-ups: with your legs bent and your soles together, lie with your hands behind your head. Tense your abs as you lift up, and touch your hands to your feet. Reverse the move, touching the floor behind your head on each rep.

3. Reverse Lunge x 20

Stand tall after your final sit-up. Keeping your chest up at all times, take a step backward with one leg, bending your front knee until the back knee touches the ground. Stand up explosively, pause and repeat with the other leg. Complete 20 total reps.

Andrew Tracey